by Saeward Schillaci, The Resource Group
When researching a potential new enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution for your company, you want to know what real customers have to say about its features. It's also important to glean more details than what many reviews provide. Statements such as "Intacct is awesome!" or "Intacct sucks, don't buy it," just don't provide useful knowledge. Rather than you spending time poring through often vague customer reviews about Intacct, we've done the work for you. We found the most common compliments and complaints, and summarized everything here. If you have more specific questions about how Intacct might work for your organization, contact a partner reseller such as The Resource Group.
What's awesome about Intacct?
1. Intacct focuses on financial management and accounting functionality, and allows customers to pick their own software for other ERP needs.
The Intacct ERP solution is designed as a best-of-breed, cloud-based financial solution rather than a comprehensive ERP suite. This means that Intacct concentrates on having exceptional features related to financial management without worrying about the rest. For example, Intacct's dashboard and reporting capabilities are a particular strength of the software, often receiving praise from customers for making it much easier to gain better financial insight. As business intelligence and quick decision-making have become more important, Intacct has kept pace with market needs by providing helpful updates and new functionality.
The other advantage to Intacct's focus on accounting is that it allows customers to pick other best-of-breed solutions according to their business needs. For example, an organization may or may not need a CRM solution. Intacct's approach means that these businesses aren't forced into purchasing a CRM system that they won't use, and if they already have a CRM solution, they can integrate it to Intacct using its world-class integration capabilities. Many positive customer reviews state that their business implemented Intacct to provide a particular capability, such as reporting, while continuing to use other software solutions.
2. Intacct works especially well for nonprofits, SaaS companies, and professional services organizations.
From the beginning of its design, Intacct has focused on being an excellent solution for nonprofits, other SaaS companies, and professional services companies. Customers from these targeted markets continue to provide particularly glowing reviews about how much Intacct has helped their business. The key to this success lies in lots of small details, some of which are summarized here.
For nonprofits, for example, where costs must be carefully kept under control, Intacct provides significant discounts. The software also offers FAS 116 and 117-compliant reports out-of-the-box, dimensional chart of accounts for very flexible reporting and dashboard capabilities, automatic inter-fund accounting, and spend management.
For SaaS companies, Intacct provides excellent dashboard and reporting capabilities. The Digital Board Book provides excellent reporting and monitoring of the five Cs: CMRR, Cash, Churn, CAC, and CLTV. Intacct also offers contract and revenue recognition management and ASC 606/IFRS 15 compliancy, thereby supporting SaaS companies in areas of accounting which can pose particular challenges for the industry.
For professional services organizations, Intacct offers a well-liked series of project modules, which not only provide project accounting functionality, but also robust project management capabilities. As of April 2017, these modules include Basic Project Tracking, Time and Expense, Project Costing, Project Costing and Billing, and Project and Resource Management. In particular, customers state that the ability to bill all project related tasks from one place (i.e. time, employee expenses, purchasing expenses, Accounts Payable expenses, milestone and percent complete billing) is very helpful for understanding the flow of project revenue and automating the project billing process. Popular project management capabilities include Resource Management and the ability to create Gantt charts.
4. Intacct can handle complex reporting needs (but users will do better with proper training).
The reporting capabilities within Intacct are a common source of both praise and complaints from customers. This mixed reception seems to be due to the fact that the reporting functionality is robust and can handle complex needs, but for some users might be less intuitive than other aspects of the accounting software. Users who have had proper training consistently state that the reporting capabilities work very well for their requirements. According to many customer reviews, the Financial Report Builder module can help streamline processes that were previously time-consuming and manually intensive. These customers relate that the report customizing process is simple and accommodates their needs. (Customer complaints about reporting are discussed below in Item 8.)
What are common problems with Intacct?
5. Historically, the Inventory Management module has been a little clunky.
It's difficult to pinpoint specific issues within Inventory that Intacct has not fixed as a response to customer feedback. However, historically this module has not been quite as well designed as other aspects of Intacct. Users complained of clunky interfaces, limited search functionality, and poor integration with other modules. On the other hand, since late 2015 Intacct has been focusing on improving its software to become a bigger player in the distribution market. This means that the Inventory Management module, in particular, is in the process of a major overhaul and customers can expect significant improvements over time. One thing Intacct has proven repeatedly is its ability to evolve to meet and surpass market standards in a particular area; focused improvement of the Inventory module will likely become more proof of Intacct's commitment towards growth.
6. Quarterly updates sometimes require new training for users to understand.
Because Intacct is sold as multi-tenant, cloud-based solution, its quarterly updates are automatically applied to all customers. For most users, this is a long-term advantage over traditional on-premises ERP solutions because customers don’t have to pay to purchase or integrate updates, and there is no business disruption. However, Intacct’s updates sometimes incorporate significant changes to daily functionality. Intacct does provide a detailed change log and training videos explaining new features, but for some companies experiencing quarterly updates can still be inconvenient. Some customer reviews report experiencing minor issues after an update is applied, which might be more of a problem if users can't pause for a little training at that time. Intacct also applies weekly updates that fix minor bugs, but these are usually simple tweaks and are rarely mentioned in customer reviews.
7. Because Intacct emphasizes leaving a very clear audit trail, it can be difficult to go back and make changes to errors.
Because Intacct recognizes the importance of leaving an audit trail and is a fully GAAP-compliant solution, making changes to errors can sometimes be more difficult than users anticipated. This seems to be especially true for new customers switching to Intacct from QuickBooks. These customers often praise the better audit trail built into Intacct, but are surprised by the sharp transition as they come from using a software like QuickBooks that makes it especially simple to fix problems and isn't fully GAAP-compliant. These users may require additional training to get the best out of the Intacct software, which intentionally requires a longer process to fix certain types of errors. Of course, nearly all competing financial solutions that are on-par with Intacct, such as the Microsoft Dynamics line of ERP software and Sage solutions, are also GAAP-compliant. This means that former QuickBooks users will likely have the same complaint when upgrading to any financial solution in this tier.
8. Reporting functionality is not always intuitive (but works well with proper training).
As discussed in Item 4 above, the reporting functionality in Intacct is a common source of both positive and negative reviews from customers. This mostly seems to be due to the fact that the full scope of the software's reporting capabilities is not as intuitive for some users compared to other aspects of Intacct. While some users say they love the reporting and find it easy to use, other reviews say it's overly confusing and difficult to customize reports. The conclusion seems to be that businesses with complicated reporting needs will probably like Intacct, but should anticipate spending some time and resources to ensure that users are properly trained. In the near future, Intacct plans to release an all-new Custom Report Writer that will incorporate drag-and-drop functionality as well as a pivot table-style user interface. Hopefully this will maintain the complex capabilities of reporting, but also make the functionality more intuitive for new users.
If you have more questions about any of these features or other characteristics of Intacct, please contact the experts at Intacct or a partner reseller such as The Resource Group.